14 September, 2016

"Truth, beauty and annihilation"

An interesting read from Guardian columnist Stephen Moss concerning his middle-age quest to "to see if playing better chess would make me a better person."

Coincidently, this weekend I had just bought the latest copy of "Chess'' the British Chess magazine , which also had a long interview with him about the same subject.

That was a good read, so the addition from the Guardian was appreciated.

Its notable that his subtitle to "if it would make me a better person" is "I was unprepared for the pain of defeat", so you know this will be a warts and all description of what it feels like to be an enthusiastic amateur !

In fact, the article ( & book )  is more concerned with what chess can give you, to help in your life, rather than games and analysis, which makes it more of general interest.

Moss makes some very good observations. 

For example, I am sure I fall into his category of players who played at ( or even for ) school, and achieved moderate success, but then dropped it for adventures in real life, until returning much later in life.

The internet makes this return easier for sure, since you don't need visit a club, and can play as anonymously as you like, but eventually you need to get out to play real people, and experience the more personal aspects of the game.

He has written a book on his experiences, called 'The Rookie', and on the basis of what I have read so far, I am certain it will be a worthwhile read.